Gangtok, July 15, 2017: The Union Minister of External Affairs, Sushma Swaraj briefed Members of Parliament in the presence of Minister of Defence and Finance, Arun Jaitley on the ensuing Doklam Standoff with China. The meeting was also attended by former Prime Minister, H D Deve Gowda. The Foreign Secretary, S. Jaishankar stated that there were differences but no tension at the border and the Government is using all diplomatic channels to resolve the matter. The Indian Government is effectively engaging with Chinese counterparts to maintain status quo at the border and ensure that the Batangla tri-junction between India, Bhutan and China is not disturbed.
P.D.Rai, sitting Member of Parliament in the Lok Sabha from Sikkim, speaking at the meeting urged the government to take cognizance of the state of Sikkim being sandwiched between the Gorkhaland movement and the Doklam standoff. The shortage of essential commodities like sugar and rice in Sikkim were also pointed out. Rai also pointed out to Chinese media reports fueling anti-national feelings in Sikkim and elsewhere which is a matter of great concern.
H. Lachunga, MP Rajya Sabha from Sikkim also brought out the need for infrastructure development at the border areas to ensure quick response to any exigency. Both MPs reiterated that the issue of Gorkhaland needs to be resolved at the earliest to bring stability in the region. This is the view expressed by Hon’ble CM of Sikkim, Pawan Chamling in all his letters to the Government of India. The unanimous view of leaders of all political parties present was to ensure restraint on both sides and the resolution through negotiations via diplomatic channels with the Chinese Government at the earliest.